Today sees the celebration of World Down Syndrome Day. For Brentford fans, two people, with very separate stories, have become key parts of every Griffin Park matchday.
For a generation of players and supporters, life-long Brentford fan Anthony Talbot has come to symbolise matchday. A smiling, welcoming presence in the stands and on the pitch at Griffin Park, Anthony has spent more than 30 years working for the club he supports. While managers, players, and staff have come and gone, Anthony has remained at the heart of our matchdays. Here's Anthony's story
Woody is seven years old, non-verbal, and has Down Syndrome. He can only communicate through sign language, a very limited vocabulary and an incredibly infectious smile. Nat, Woody’s mum, tried to get Woody into their local football team but was turned away. She turned to social media late one night to raise awareness of the issue and a friend told her to get in touch with Brentford. Nat went to bed that night and through the powers of social media we were in touch! She woke up to 100’s of notifications from friends and missed calls and messages from the club.
That day, Woody came to our match and was made mascot for the day. He led the Bees out in his new kit with “Woody 6” on the back. Nat described it as “the best day of his life”. Woody and Nat have been back to Griffin Park several times since and now have a very special bond with the club and the staff. When we recently played Stoke City, Peter Crouch even took some time out to chat and posed for a picture. Here's Woody's story